UPDATE: Don Martin, Tyler police spokesman, told the Tyler Morning Telegraph early Thursday what led to the capture of James Calvert late Wednesday.
Martin said West Monroe Louisiana's police department contacted Tyler police around 11:30 p.m. Wednesday about a person in custody by the name of James Calvert, who matched the description of the man wanted in Tyler, suspected of killing his ex-wife and kidnapping their 4-year-old child.
Martin said the West Monroe police had conducted a regular traffic stop on the vehicle Calvert was driving, but its license plates were not the ones on the vehicle earlier in the day. So, authorities at that time were not aware a wanted person was inside.
During the traffic stop, Calvert ran from police, authorities said. It began as a slow pursuit and changed to a high-speed pursuit. However, Calvert turned down a street that turned into a dead end road and wrecked the car, Martin said.
Police, with weapons drawn, surrounded the vehicle, noticing that a small child was in the back seat in a car seat and that Calvert had a gun on his lap and another gun in the backseat, Martin said.
They quickly put together this was someone wanted out of Texas.
West Monroe police contacted Tyler police and informed them of who they had in custody and that they had one small child who was not injured.
UPDATE: Tyler police spokesman Don Martin notified the Tyler Morning Telegraph shortly before midnight that authorities captured 41-year-old James W. Calvert in Monroe, La. and that 4-year-old Lucas Calvert was safe.
Authorities continued a statewide search late Wednesday for a man who they say shot and killed his ex-wife as he kidnapped their 4-year-old son from her Tyler home Wednesday afternoon.
Don Martin, Tyler police spokesman, said callers reported multiple shots fired at 3315 Bain Place and a man seen leaving the area with a small child.
When officers arrived, they found 30-year-old Jelena Radobanovic Sriraman, who immigrated from Croatia, dead in the carport of the home. They also discovered her son, Lucas Calvert was missing.
Martin said the woman, who became a naturalized citizen and earned a degree from Tyler Junior College, was shot and the suspect is her former husband, James W. Calvert, 41, a man with a history of domestic violence against his ex-wife.
Martin said officials at Andy Woods Elementary, just a few blocks from the shooting, placed the school on lockdown and the couple's daughter, who is a student, was taken into protective custody. Police also notified her current husband in Houston.
“We need to find this individual immediately. He is armed and considered dangerous. It is important to apprehend this man and make sure this child is safe,” he said at the scene Wednesday as friends of the woman cried and consoled each other.
Calvert was last seen driving, a 2000 gray Buick LeSabre with Texas license plate DP4-G858. He was described as 5 feet, 9 inches tall, weighing 185 pounds with brown hair and brown eyes.
An Amber Alert was issued, and police said if residents saw the vehicle to follow and keep it in sight if they could do so safely.
“If you see this car, please call police immediately,” Martin said. “It is imperative.”
Moments later, around 1 p.m., police officers jumped into several cruisers and raced to another scene, where they believed Calvert might have been hiding.
That scenario played out multiple times as possible sightings had the man in Whitehouse, east of Tyler on Texas Highway 31 east, in Flint and again near Van.
SWAT members, with rifles ready, hid in a wooded area near a home in southern Smith County until late Wednesday in hopes Calvert would show up, but as of 8 p.m. the location was a bust.
Van ISD locked down its school system briefly when a reported sighting had Calvert in the area.
Martin said Lucas was last seen wearing a blue sweatshirt, grey sweatpants, brown sandals and has silver caps on his front teeth. He was described as about 3 feet tall, weighing about 30 to 40 pounds with brown hair and brown eyes.
Southern Oaks Baptist Church Pastor Larry Craig said Mrs. Sriraman worked in the church's Mother's Day Out program and was an incredible woman who recently won her children in a custody battle.
Craig said he didn't recall the case was really heated and that he was shocked. He said the reality had not set in with members of his church.
“Like any neighbor, like any family we are going to help the children, and we're going to help her new husband,” he said.
Neighbors said the woman was set to join her current husband in Houston where he is employed.
Martin said a capital murder warrant was issued by Judge Jack Skeen and bond was set at $2 million. Local, state and federal agencies are all involved in the case.
Martin added that a 24-hour hotline has been set up at the Tyler Police Department Command Post. The number to call with information on James Calvert is 903-595-7220. If the line is busy, please call the Tyler Police Department's main communications line at 903-531-1000.
Staff Writer Jacque Hilburn-Simmons contributed to this report.